茶の湯 in サンフランシスコ ・ Japanese Tea Ceremony を San Franciscoで

表千家四方社中の茶の湯ブログ Japanese Tea Ceremony Blog for Shikata Shachu – Omotesenke

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会記は先に見るべき?・Should Kaiki Be Reviewed in Advance?


The other day someone made an interesting comment during his talk.


He said: “I don’t look at the kaiki (records of the tea event) in advance.  It is like taking an exam after seeing the answers.  That would reduce the exchanges with the host to a mere act.  A genuine surprise or joy would be more meaningful.”


If I ask about something already covered in the kaiki, I am worried that someone may think of me as a lazy person who has not done my homework.  But that may be an unnecessary concern as it is very rare to be the first guest at a tea event.


If you read it beforehand, I think you will have an opportunity to drill down deeper beyond cursory questions and answers.  Just my humble opinion….


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一期一会・Ichigo Ichi’e

一期一会。一生に一度だけの機会。生涯に一度限りであること。「一期」は仏教語で、人が生まれてから死ぬまでの間の意味です。Ichigo ichi’e.  A once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.  It happens only once in your life.  “Ichigo” means the time between birth and death in the Buddhism terminology.


These words are widely known in the tea community as the ideal mindset in attending a tea event: “Both the host and guests must do their utmost as the opportunity may never be repeated in the same lifetime.”


It is said that its origin is Rikyu’s disciple, So’uji.  He made an entry in his Yamano’u’e No So’uji Ki” (The “Yamano’u’e no So’uji Chronicle”) referring to “a meeting that happens only once in one’s life” (一期に一度の会).  In the late Edo Period, Na’osuke I’i adopted “ichigo ichi’e” as his principal motto of his tea life in his “Chanoyu ichi’eshu’u” (The Collection of Tea Meetings), which then subsequently spread to the public.





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We have written about a hanging bamboo hana’ire called Onjo’uji, but who was the first to use a bamboo hana’ire on the alcove floor (okizutsu)?


Here is what an article in D-kai‘s monthly magazine says:


When it comes to creation of hanai’re, one question is: whose idea was it to use a bamboo hana’ire on the floor?


Bamboo hana’ire, of course, is not a utensil of “shin (真)” (formal) level.  It is a rule to display hana’ire, if it is a “shin” utensil, on a board in the middle of the alcove.  Chinese (karamono) hana’ire of bronze or celadon (both “shin” utensils) are to be displayed on the floor of the alcove.  But Rikyu breaks that rule.  Ryu’ugo hana’ire of kiseto finish (yellow seto glaze hana’ire in the shape of a Japanese hand drum with a cinched middle) is not for hanging.  It is made in Japan, and a new production on top of it (rather than an antique).  But Rikyu deviated from the “taboo” by placing it on the alcove floor.  That was his uniqueness.  [Omitted]


It is also a rule to hang bamboo hanai’re on the alcove wall.  Who broke from that tradition and placed it on the alcove floor?  According to conventional researches, it was Yo’uken Fujimura.  Yo’uken was a disciple of So’utan’s, and a well-accomplished tea-man who later dictated “Chawa Shigetsu Shu’u (茶話指月集)”.  Yo’uken made hana’ire and named it: “Oso’uma (Slow Horse).”  A slow horse cannot run (kakerarenai).  And the hana’ire is not for hanging (kakerarenai).  It is a play on words.  Kakeru (to run) in Japanese is a homonym of kakeru (to hang).

千家人物散歩 千宗旦(十五)